We have been learning about living an extraordinary life in Wednesday night discipleship class. One of the verse we discussed was to live as Jesus did (I John 2:6), and for some time now I have been reading the gospels to see what Jesus did and how he lived. I came across a scripture that literally made me see the extraordinary life that Jesus lived – taken to, as Pastor Ed Young would say “A whole ‘nother level.”
I know that Jesus was God. I know that God knows everything. I just never really thought about Jesus on earth knowing everything. I think I focus on the fact that he was human. He faced the same problems, tests and trials that we do. Then I came across this verse, that made it very clear. Jesus knew who was going to betray Him from the beginning.
Talk about another level, Jesus knew who would betray Him, yet He still called Judas as a disciple. He still opened Himself up to Judas and was in close fellowship with him. I mean it is not like Judas was just one of His followers. Judas was one of the 12, one in the group closest to Jesus. And yet Jesus, in His human self let Judas in that circle – not by mistake or accident, on purpose.
Two sobering thoughts hit me 1) Jesus made himself vulnerable, to the point of death, by His own free will – for me. I mean He sacrificed His life, and that was enough, but He was literally sleeping with the enemy (and I do not mean that in a perverted way) to save me.
2) Jesus knew this person in His inner circle would betray Him, and He still let Judas in. He did not treat Judas differently than the other disciples, He loved him, served him, and opened his life to Judas.
And as I write this, I realize Christ has called us to live the same way. We can not carry offense, keep people at arms lengths, or just walk away. We are still to minister to people, love them, serve them, even if they have the potential to hurt us or have hurt us.
I am left wondering in my human mind, if Jesus thought He might be able to change Judas so that he would not go down that path. Could the pure love Jesus gave have changed Judas’ path? I realize ultimately someone else would have filled Judas’s shoes, but I am still left wondering.